Making Things Happen Mastering Project Management

ISBN-10: 0596517718

ISBN-13: 9780596517717

Edition: 2008

Authors: Scott Berkun

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Description:

In the updated edition of this critically acclaimed and bestselling book, Microsoft project veteran Scott Berkun offers a collection of essays on field-tested philosophies and strategies for defining, leading, and managing projects. Each essay distills complex concepts and challenges into practical nuggets of useful advice, and the new edition now adds more value for leaders and managers of projects everywhere. Based on his nine years of experience as a program manager for Internet Explorer, and lead program manager for Windows and MSN, Berkun explains to technical and non-technical readers alike what it takes to get through a large software or web development project. Making Things Happen doesn't cite specific methods, but focuses on philosophy and strategy. Unlike other project management books, Berkun offers personal essays in a comfortable style and easy tone that emulate the relationship of a wise project manager who gives good, entertaining and passionate advice to those who ask. Topics in this new edition include: How to make things happen Making good decisions Specifications and requirements Ideas and what to do with them How not to annoy people Leadership and trust The truth about making dates What to do when things go wrong Complete with a new forward from the author and a discussion guide for forming reading groups/teams, Making Things Happen offers in-depth exercises to help you apply lessons from the book to your job. It is inspiring, funny, honest, and compelling, and definitely the one book that you and your team need to have within arm's reach throughout the life of your project. Coming from the rare perspective of someone who fought difficult battles on Microsoft's biggest projects and taught project design and management for MSTE, Microsoft's internal best practices group, this is valuable advice indeed. It will serve you well with your current work, and on future projects to come.
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Book details

List price: $39.99
Copyright year: 2008
Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
Publication date: 4/4/2008
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 392
Size: 6.75" wide x 9.25" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.716
Language: English

Scott Berkun is the bestselling author of The Myths of Innovation,and Making Things Happen. His work as a writer and public speaker haveappeared in The Washington Post, The New York Times, Wired Magazine, Fast Company, Forbes Magazine, The Wall Street Journal and other media. He has taught creative thinking at the University of Washington and has been a regular commentator on CNBC, MSNBC and National Public Radio. His many popular essays and entertaining lectures can be found for free on his blog at www.scottberkun.com.

Foreword
Preface
Who should read this book
Assumptions I've made about you in writing this book
How to use this book
How to contact us
Safaria“ Books Online
A brief history of project management (and why you should care)
Using history
Web development, kitchens, and emergency rooms
The role of project management
Program and project management at Microsoft
The balancing act of project management
Pressure and distraction
The right kind of involvement
Summary
Exercises
One Plans
The truth about schedules
Schedules have three purposes
Silver bullets and methodologies
What schedules look like
Why schedules fail
What must happen for schedules to work
Summary
Exercises
How to figure out what to do
Software planning demystified
Approaching plans: the three perspectives
The magical interdisciplinary view
Asking the right questions
Catalog of common bad ways to decide what to do
The process of planning
Customer research and its abuses
Bringing it all together: requirements
Summary
Exercises
Writing the good vision
The value of writing things down
How much vision do you need?
The five qualities of good visions
The key points to cover
On writing well
Drafting, reviewing, and revising
A catalog of lame vision statements (which should be avoided)
Examples of visions and goals
Visions should be visual
The vision sanity check: daily worship
Summary
Exercises
Where ideas come from
The gap from requirements to solutions
There are bad ideas
Thinking in and out of boxes is OK
Good questions attract good ideas
Bad ideas lead to good ideas
Perspective and improvisation
The customer experience starts the design
A design is a series of conversations
Summary
Exercises
What to do with ideas once you have them
Skills
Writing good specifications
What specifications can and cannot do
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